Simple Homescreen design

It’s been way too long since I’ve done a post on technology, so here’s a great one.

I gave up my iPhone about a year and a half ago, and finally am well settled into Android.  While I might miss the keyboard, which is a joy to use compared to pretty much every Android offering, the customization I get from Droid is well worth it.
Screenshot_2013-02-21-07-01-55                    Screenshot_2013-02-21-07-32-23                    Screenshot_2013-02-21-07-32-07

Here’s a few photos of my homescreens.  The one on the left is my main screen, and as anyone who uses Android can see, I have no visible dock.  This is achieved with Nova Launcher with Prime, a free launcher with a premium paid upgrade.  The main benefit of the pay features are gestures, so swiping down with two fingers opens my app drawer, voiding the need for an button to do so.

Of the three icons I have on the homescreen.. Gmail, Google Talk, and Messaging, you’ll note that the top one has a small number underneath it.  This is the unread count for that app, and is a free plugin for Nova called Tesla Unread.

The time, weather, sunrise/sunset and calendar widgets are achieved with Zooper Widget Pro (free version available here), my favorite fully customizable widget app. I’ll also mention here that the fonts used throughout this layout is Hattori Hanzo, found in the Font Installer App (I merely shared it to my SD card and installed it in the root/Fonts folder and it shows up in Zooper. Note that this Font app requires root access, so if you’d like the font emailed to you, just reply below and I’ll sort you out.

The middle shot shows one of two CircleLauncher Lite shortcuts I have on my desktop, basically two areas of the screen with an invisible icon that open radial menus to access my primary and secondary apps. This is a new-ish app to me, and I haven’t found any reason to upgrade to the full version yet. I probably will if this continues to perform so admirably.

Third shot is my second homescreen, and is a fullscreen widget for Any.do. It’s a phenomenal task/to do list tool that is cross platform, and even has a chrome widget (so you can add tasks from within Gmail, or from the extension toolbar at the top right of Chrome. Give it a shot and bask in its powerful simplicity

I’ll mention that the wallpaper is part of a much larger digital work by my best friend, Erin English, for my birthday (low res copy here).  She is a phenomenal artist with a really unique style.  She is back in school now, and loves to do commissions for anyone interested.  Tell her I sent you and maybe she’ll give you a great price!

Sunrise/Sunset

So recently I’ve decided to start keeping track of when the sun rises, and when it sets. What’s great about this is it means that I can be awake, and outside enjoying nature every morning, and watch the simple act of the sun rising above the horizon. It’s a quiet way to start the day, to witness. It’s a great humbling way to start every morning, to reset oneself. Highly recommended.

Book on the Mat: The Buddha Walks into a Bar

As part of my desire to be more mindful, and to continue my reflective journey inward with more dedication and persistence, I’m starting a new series of posts entitled Book on the Mat, referring to a book I’m currently reading that should help my progress into meditation and self awareness. I might touch on a work once, or return to it a number of times as I glean new insights and direction

A well used copy of the book I just picked up...

A well used copy of the book I just picked up…

The first of the series, “The Buddha Walks into a Bar” by Lodro Rinzler, came shortly before I picked up a new zafu/zabuton set from a friend. I needed something to read that I could relate to, that could steer me back onto the path of daily meditation byt comparing eastern practices to the everyday benefits that I would experience if I dedicated even ten minutes a day to sitting on the mat.

I was in Chapters after an amazing coffee dat with an old friend I had net seen in some time.  In a positive frame of mind, I was hunting for a book that would be really easily approachable.  Since I have recently cut alcohol out of my diet, the very title of this book instantly appealed to me.  Whilst the content is more geared toward the Chinese variety of Buddhism known as Shambhala (I am more focussed Japanese Zen techniques on a whole at the moment), I was reminded of Shoshin, Beginner’s Mind, and stayed open to the concept of something different.

Although I have only read a few chapters this evening, I am really glad that this is the book that I chose.  It’s exactly what I needed to read, to understand, to start to absorb.  One of the biggest messages I’ve taken to heart this far is the concept that enlightenment is how things are normally in the world before we colour and distort them with our own hopes and fears. This appeals to be on a number of levels, because it makes the concept of seeing the world as it is as a very approachable goal, or at least one that at least sounds attainable. And I like the thought of that.

Stay tuned.